If you’re a new pet owner or you’ve moved to a new area, choosing a pet clinic or veterinarian can seem daunting. You want to make sure that your furry friend is getting the best possible care, but it can be challenging to find a great vet on your own.
To make the process easier, we’ve put together some tips and advice to help you pick a pet clinic. In this post, you’ll learn what to look out for as you research vets in your area, including what to keep an eye out for during your visit.
Ask your friends and family for recommendations
Not sure where to start with your pet clinic search? The best place to begin is by asking your friends and family for veterinarian recommendations. Since these are people you know and trust, getting a referral from a loved one is a no-brainer.
With that said, you should still use your own judgment when evaluating the recommended veterinarian. Don’t feel pressured into bringing your animal to a friend’s suggested pet clinic just because you asked for a referral. Make sure to check out the rest of our tips in this article and keep them in mind during your visit to the practice.
Consider your location and schedule
As you look for a suitable pet clinic, you should be realistic about finding one that fits into your life and schedule. You won’t want to drive across town each time you need to take your pet into the vet, so it’s smart to find a practice that’s closer to home.
You should also consider how much flexibility you have with your schedule. If you aren’t easily able to take time off during the day, try to find a pet clinic that offers extended hours on certain nights or over the weekend.
In order to practice veterinary medicine, vets must be properly licensed by the state board. Before making an appointment at your local pet clinic, you should look up the veterinarian’s license and make sure it’s in good standing. Visit the American Association of Veterinary State Boards (AAVSB) website to find your state board.
Visit the pet clinic in-person
Let’s say you find a pet clinic that checks all of your boxes on paper. That’s great! The next step is to book an appointment to get a feel for the staff and the facilities. During this initial visit, pay particular attention to how the veterinarian, technicians, and even administrative staff interact with your pet.
Ideally, your furry friend will be treated with enthusiasm and love, which should make you feel a bit more comfortable leaving your pet in their care. If not, you should trust your gut feeling and try another pet clinic.
In addition to these tips, you can also consult online reviews to see what other pet owners in your area think about a particular clinic. If you see anything that you’re particularly concerned about, feel free to ask the staff if they can provide some clarity on what you’ve read about their practice (including their billing procedures).
For more pet ownership resources and tips, check out the PetPonder blog.